Assembly Leaders Unveil Budget Priorities

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Assembly Leaders Unveil Budget PrioritiesAssembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) and Assembly Budget Chair Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) are proud to say the Assembly budget plan has $17.1 billion in reserves – larger than the general funds of 34 states.

They agree with the Governor that now is the time to fill the rainy day fund – the brainchild of Assembly Democrats – ahead of schedule. In this $140 billion budget, they take another step by proposing a new state savings account. They are planning ahead to save even more money after we fill the rainy day fund.

"California’s healthy economy and job market give us an opportunity to improve the lives of those who aren’t seeing the benefits of these prosperous times. Our Assembly budget plan will help local leaders address the homeless crisis, put the state on the path to universal healthcare, and ensure higher education is accessible and affordable. It’s also a responsible spending plan that leaves our state with a sizable reserve in case of an economic downturn," said Ting.

“We are proud to say our budget plan has $17.1 billion in reserves – larger than the general funds of 34 states,” said Speaker Rendon. “Our plan also invests in California’s future. There are three primary categories of investments in the Assembly’s budget: healthcare, education and homelessness.”

There are three primary categories of investments in the Assembly’s budget:

  1. Health care: The Assembly has proposed $1 billion in investments:
    1. To expand coverage.
      1. For example, they propose expanding Medi-Cal to 20,000 seniors and disabled persons with low incomes.
      2. They also propose covering over 100,000 low-income undocumented youth, ages 19 through 25.
    2. To assist people in paying for premiums through Covered California.
  1. Education:
    1. Record funding for schools and community colleges by fully funding the Local Control Funding Formula.
    2. Fully funding the university systems to prevent tuition increases and expand enrollment for California students, while continuing oversight to ensure money is going to the intended purposes.
    3. Expanding access to child care and preschool, with $920 million of new investments.
  1. Homelessness: Communities up and down the state are fighting the explosion in homelessness.
    1. Funding soon will come on line from last year’s housing package, including the bond measure on November’s ballot.
    2. In the meantime, communities need assistance in helping the homeless find permanent housing and other support. That’s why Assembly Democrats propose more than $1.6 billion now to fight the state's homelessness emergency.

Other investments in the Assembly’s budget plan include funding for food banks and efforts to reduce food insecurity for students, seniors, and people with disabilities, and increasing the state’s successful Earned Income Tax Credit program.

The Assembly shares many of these priorities with the Senate and the Governor. We look forward to discussing these and other proposals, especially the Senate’s bold plan to help lift California children out of deep poverty.

The Budget Conference Committee, made up of members from both houses, is meeting over the next several days to come up with one spending plan. The state budget is due to the Governor by the Constitutional deadline of June 15th.

Watch here for Speaker Rendon's and Assemblymember Ting's comments.

Audio of Speaker Rendon and Assemblymember Ting:

Opening remarks from Speaker Rendon. (:34) 

Opening remarks from Assembly Budget Chair Ting. (3:56)

Assemblymember Ting remarks on the importance of a budget reserve. (1:28)

Entire, unedited Assembly Budget Priorities news conference with Speaker Rendon and Budget Chair Ting. (24:34)